Care home plan 'disappointing'.
Byline: Sarah Walker Reporter email@example.com
HEALTH chiefs say they are "very disappointed" with a care home's decision to close its nursing provision, forcing 22 elderly and frail residents to find a new place to live within 28 days.
Bondcare decided to close its 22 nursing beds at Allington House Care Home, in Billingham, "on financial grounds", according to Jean Golightly, executive nurse at the clinical commissioning group (CCG) for Stockton.
The decision had affected 24 residents at the home but The Gazette understands two residents have since passed away.
Ms Golightly, of the NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees CCG, which commissions healthcare services, said Bondcare had decided "it is not economically viable to continue to offer nursing beds".
Alison Boyle, operations director for Bondcare, said the home was unable to continue to provide nursing care, as this is "not being funded by the CCG", making the provision of such care "untenable".
Bondcare has therefore decided to close beds at the home, on Marsh House Avenue, with 28 days' notice, leaving residents who receive nursing care four weeks to find another home.
Ms Golightly said: "We are very disappointed with this decision given the disruption this will cause to the residents and their families and given the excellent work we have been undertaking with the provider to better understand the funding challenges, including the development of a system for rewarding quality improvement."
Ms Boyle added the fact nursing care wasn't financially viable for Allington House "has no bearing on any other services within Bondcare".
She said: "The home and social services are doing everything in their power to ensure the transition causes the least possible distress and inconvenience.
"Bondcare has spent many months in dialogue with the CCG and social services in order to avoid the necessity of this move on the understanding that we fully appreciate the impact that moving may have on all parties involved. This was a diffi-cult decision and was not taken lightly."
" Asked whether the decision was in any way linked to the poor inspection report published on the home by the CQC in August last year, Ms Boyle added: "The home was inspected under the new standards on June 16 and the draft report shows all standards are 'good.'"."
She added the care home was in talks with affected staff and Bondcare is "trying to facilitate relocation packages to avoid any job losses".
Stockton Council's Cabinet member for adult services and health, Councillor Jim Beall, said: "We will be supporting the CCG in finding alternative places to help them ensure there is minimal disruption to all residents."